The Anti-Racism Commission is comprised of 15 people, appointed by the Bishop, who are dedicated anti-racists working to help dismantle systemic racism, inequality, and injustice in our church and in our society. The Commission’s basic premise is that racism is a sin that must be eradicated from the institutional systems in our church and country and from ourselves individually to build the Beloved Community.
The Anti-Racism Commission was established in 1996 by a Diocesan Convention Resolution to shine light on the unequal treatment people experience in America and in the Episcopal Church based on the color of their skin.
To help create the beloved community where, in the words of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., we each are judged “by the content of our character not the color of our skin,” the Commission:
- Has developed an Anti-Racism Training course that takes a historical approach to help people understand how we got to where we are and what we need to do to achieve equality for all.
- Collaborates with the Diocesan Youth Ministry to offer anti-racism training designed specifically for young people.
- Conducts two-hour anti-racism workshops for parishes in transition before they begin their search for a new priest.
- Delivers presentations at convocation meetings, Vestry retreats, and other group meetings.
- Holds conferences and other special events to build a knowledgeable and empowered corps of anti-racists.
Hundreds of lay and ordained Episcopalians and others from across the country and the world have already completed the Commission’s anti-racism training – which is offered in English and in Spanish, virtually and in-person. The Anti-Racism Commission’s activities have a lasting impact on the adults and youth who learn the history and scope of racism in America. After the training, most people feel empowered become part of the movement to bring about reform in immigration policy, police practices, and in human and civil rights. The training also helps participants rid themselves of internalized racial superiority/inferiority.
The Anti-Racism Commission recently created an Ambassadors for Social and Racial Justice Team that helps spread the word about systemic racism and initiates local anti-racism projects within their congregations and in their neighborhoods in partnership with local community service organizations.